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174

(1887) [MARC] Author: Viktor Rydberg Translator: Alfred Corning Clark With: Hans Anton Westesson Lindehn
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Full resolution (JPEG) - On this page / på denna sida - Antique Statues - 1. The Aphrodite of Melos

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174 ROMAN DAYS.
time. Undecided it is and remains, whether this Menides’
son from Antioch is the one who made the alteration, or
whether, at the mending of the pedestal, an elder inscrip-
tion with the original master’s name was copied.
After Quatremere and Clarac, Wieseler appeared, with
a third hypothesis, according to which the Melian Aph-
rodite had held a lance, a sword or a helmet, in the left
hand. He leaves entirely out of the question what she
may have done with the right. This conjecture does
not solve any of the difficulties before pointed out.
But we now come to a third view, put forward by the
Englishman Millingen, and later adopted by Clarac, as
well as by the excellent art critics, Otfr. Miiller and
Welcker. Millingen supposes that the goddess held
Ares’ shield in her hands. This is indisputably a happier
solution than those preceding. The reader will remember
that the left knee of the statue is bent, and the foot rests
upon some object, now destroyed, which rose above the
level of the base. Millingen’s hypothesis explains this
circumstance, as well as the marked inclination of the
upper part of the body. The war-god’s shield has been
supported on the bent knee ; the goddess’s right hand
has held the edge of the shield close to this point of
support ; her left hand has lain upon the upper edge of
the weapon of defence ; and the upper part of the body,
by its leaning to the right, has accomplished a statically
correct and aesthetically charming balance of the whole.
The hypothesis is based, moreover, upon similar an-
tique compositions. The thought is Hellenic, if not
from the best epoch of the art. In his poem " Argo-
nautica," Apollonius of Rhodes depicts the magnificent
embroidery upon the mantle of Jason the hero, and men-

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